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" Lorton and Spout Force "

Date & start time:      12th August 2020.   5 pm start.

Location of Start :     Scawgill Bridge top car park, Whinlatter, Cumbria, Uk. ( NY 181  256)

Places visited :          Lorton Village, the Lorton Yew and then up to Spout Force waterfall.

Walk details :              1 mile, 450 ft of ascent, half an hour for the walk.

Highest point :           The car park on the Darling How track (223m above sea level).

Walked with :              Myself and our dogs, Dylan and Dougal.

Weather :                     The end of a sunny afternoon.

© Crown copyright. All rights reserved. Licence number PU 100034184.


A drive to the Lorton Shop gave me an easy opportunity to walk the dogs somewhere different this day.

With the recent hot weather the crowds are out and the popular car parks are full so I headed for a lesser known spot.

Even here I met six or eight people but my route down and back meant I had the majority of the walk to myself.

The Yew Tree Hall in the centre of Lorton village.

The old houses of High Lorton curl around the side field of Lorton Park.   Kirk Fell stands clear behind.

The Lorton Yew "Pride of Lorton Vale" made famous by a certain Mr Wordsworth in a poem following his 1804 visit,

also visited by George Fox who held a famous Quaker meeting here in 1653 and later on Cannon Rawnsley in 1903.

From a measurement of its girth it is thought to be 1100 to 1400 years old, as old as the village itself.

In 1800 there was no brewery, no brewery cottages, no malt house (now the Yew Tree Hall), no Yew Tree
View cottages and no Corner House until 1809, when built by William Jennings, who had malt kilns by the beck. Only
Boonbeck farm stood nearby.  
    Michael Baron / Derek Denman

The ground close to the tree have been landscaped in recent years.

To celebrate the bicentenary of Wordsworth's visit to the famous tree a cutting was propagated from it

and "Son of Yew" is now growing well at Crossgates junction a short distance away between High and Low Lorton.

Had I been a few days earlier I could have shown you the wildflower patch that has been planted near the tree

but they have cut the grass now the flowers have set seed. 

I must do the same with my paddock wild flower area one day when I have a moment.

From Lorton I drove up the hill towards Whinlatter, stopping at the chair to appreciate the view north.

From there I could also look down on the quarry at Scawgill Bridge.

- - - o o o - - -



I had intended to park on the Whinlatter Road at the bridge

but this higher road took me further up the valley

which encouraged me to take a second option.


I emerged onto the main road

just up from the top Spout Force car park

on the track to Darling How Farm.


There I found

ample parking for visitors and the second path

down into the Aiken Beck Valley and the waterfall.


- - - o o o - - -

The public footpath skirts around a level field and then heads rapidly downward into the valley on the right.

Officianodos of shapely peaks will recognise Ladyside Pike between the trees on the left.

Predictably of course, the spring lock-down and lack of tourists has meant that the path has become somewhat overgrown.

The only problem to watch out for were the fresh bramble and nettle plants that occasionally hung over the path.

Route finding was no problem as my trusty local guides led the way.

We're heading down through the young trees to the bridge below.

Scawgill Bridge and the more usual path up the valley to the waterfall.

I'm last again over the bridge . . . nothing new there !

Under the canopy of the plantation . . .
. . . that grows alongside Aiken Beck.

At a slight bend in the river the path rises to avoid the undercut bank.

Summer visitors have built a stone dam and created a small paddling pool.

The flat ground alongside has signs of being used for picnics and no doubt fun days by the river.

From here on up it is 'wet feet' time . . .
. . . but you can scramble all the way up to the base of the falls.

The waterfall is some 13 metres in height, made more dramatic by being enclosed in a rocky gorge.

The falls are best seen early in the year when the trees are not in leaf, but today with recent rains, the gorge is full of dramatic spray.

The residual water on the lens goes unnoticed (till now)

as I backtrack and climb the path to the official viewing point.

A narrow footpath and stout fence have been constructed on the near vertical valley side.

- - - o o o - - -



The fenced path area expands slightly

to allow a viewing platform high above the falls.


There are a few winter photos by Ann Bowker

on the Visit Cumbria website here

(afterwards just backspace to return)


or click my own link at the base of this page.



- - - o o o - - -

Already wet from the earlier walk up the river, Dougal continues downstream in the same style.

That just leaves the slightly damp climb . . .
. . . back up to the field and the top parking area by the track.

So completes this quick shopping trip and delightful little dog walk !

- - - o o o - - -

Earlier in the year, at the start of lockdown, I published some photos of your local walks.

This week Hilary from East Bridgford has sent me a fourth picture in her sequence . . .

9th April.
14th April.
9th August.
25th August.

Dear Roger and Ann
The barley field, now harvested.
Our love to you both
Hilary & David.

- - - o o o - - -


Technical note: Pictures taken with Ann's Panasonic Lumix TZ60 Camera.

Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.

This site best viewed with . . .malted cereal grain flour to fill the bread maker.

Go to Home Page . . . © RmH . . . Email me here

Previous walk - 31st July 2020 - Sandy Yat and Keswick

A previous time up here - 15th November 2010 Spout Force walk

Next walk - 30th August 2020 - John's Seat and Darling Fell


Guess what is coming up soon ?

Get ready for 2021.

Despite the problems of the day, the printers are still working and your favourite Loweswatercam Calendar has just gone to press.


Watch this space for how and when to order your copies   :o)